Video, Podcasts, and the Future of AI: What We Learned at DMEXCO
This year, we were on the floor talking about how our new free experience helps fans discover more, and how that personalisation benefits both fans and brands. With a total of six speaking engagements and a number of exciting announcements — including an expansion of our relationship with Nielsen through the adoption of Nielsen Brand Effect — it is safe to say that Spotify’s DMEXCO 2018 was bigger than ever.
Here’s a look at what we were up to in Germany.
Day 1 kicked off with Sean Kegelman, Spotify’s Global Head of Data and Audience Solutions, on the Experience Stage. The panel topic was “Esthetic Ways of AI,” and Sean joined an eclectic cast that included Susan Wegner, VP Data Governance, Architecture and Analytics at Deutsche Telekom; Florian Dohmann, Founder/AI expert of Birds on Mars; Steven Althaus, Head of Global Marketing & Brand Communications at Credit Suisse; and Jason Romeyko, Worldwide Executive Creative Director, Serviceplan, for a lively discussion on the relationship between AI and creativity.
Sean set the tone of the panel by explaining how Spotify uses AI to personalise music experiences for listeners and power the 10 billion new discoveries that happen on our platform each month. However, Sean also emphasised that while machine learning is important, so is the human element, like the human-curated playlists that fans enjoy on Spotify. Said Sean, “In the end, it is a fine balance when it comes to content. AI can do powerful things, but the human touch will always be essential.”
Florian Dohmann, who spoke about artist Roman Lipski’s collaboration with AI in his art, agreed. “Like Spotify, I also believe that the human and artificial need to work together.”
Meanwhile, Steven Althaus of Credit Suisse, who talked about AI’s potential to improve brands’ overall customer experiences, emphasised putting the user first. Said Athaus: “Today, people think — I have this awesome user experience with Spotify, why can’t I have that in other services? You have to look to the gold standard and do the same.”
The last Spotify panel of the day was moderated by Angela Solk, Spotify’s Head of Agency Partnerships. She joined Jocelyn Lee, Head of Media Strategy and Ad Technology Deloitte Digital/Heat, Ben Wood, Director of Agencies, EMEA, Facebook, and Tim Ringel, Global CEO, Reprise Digital for a discussion around breaking the traditional agency silos.
The provocative panel brought representatives from an agency, consultancy, and partner/vendor to discuss how the breakdown of norms in the traditional media space is forcing agencies to adapt. While all the panelists came from unique backgrounds, they agreed that all parties need to work together to do what’s best for the client.
Said Ben, “There’s a narrative about how agencies and consulting groups are on a collision course — but that’s not what I’m seeing. When brands need advertising, we go to agencies. When we talk about how to use WhatsApp, we go to consultants.” Jocelyn also agreed, “The agency or the entity that can best help clients navigate through data will ultimately be the most helpful for clients.” Angela wrapped up the session succinctly: “I think we were all selected for this panel because they thought we’d have competing viewpoints, but in the end, I think we all agree — agencies, consultants, partners, and in-house all have a role to play.”
Finally, we got the party started in our booth with DJs Niklas Ibach and Giorgia Angiuli. After a great day, people were thrilled to mingle, compare notes, and cut loose.
Day 1 of DMEXCO was a blur of meet and greets, panel discussions, and presentations. But Day 2 started out with a more mellow vibe. That is, until the day’s biggest attraction — a conversation with Spotify Managing Director of EMEA, Michael Krause and acclaimed Fest & Flauschig podcast host, moderator, satirist, and author Jan Böhmermann at the Congress Stage.
In their lively conversation, Michael and Jan discussed how the media landscape has changed, the genesis of the Fest & Flauschig podcast with Spotify, and Fest & Flauschig’s upcoming 100th episode celebration.
When asked about the shift from traditional media to the new, Jan argued that the demand for TV and radio content isn’t going away — it’s just that it may not be delivered through the same traditional channels. Jan also turned the lens on Michael, asking him to explain how Spotify’s use of data is different than traditional media. Michael said that Spotify’s ability to use their data to personalise the listening experience is key.
All in all, it was a great DMEXCO. We hope everyone who attended enjoyed themselves as much as we did. Tschüss, bis zum nächsten Jahr!